NORMAN ATLANTIC: Initiation of Process for the Removal of Vehicles from the Garages of the Vessel

Ten months after the NORMAN ATLANTIC tragic accident and within the context of the investigation procedures that are being conducted by the Italian authorities, the long expected removal of vehicles from the garages of the ship is anticipated to begin within the next few weeks, probably by the middle of next month. At a meeting that took place on October 21, 2015 in Bari, where the wreck of the vessel is still docked and guarded, the competent authorities decided that the procedure for the removal of vehicles and other objects from the ship should start immediately after the approval of security plans for the protection of experts and technical consultants who will enter the ship, for the protection of the surrounding environment etc..

The removal process is expected to last for months, and is going to take place under the supervision of the court appointed technical experts and a forensic team. The latter will ensure that all the objects and data necessary for the revelation of causes and liabilities for the accident are collected, and that any human remains which may be located in areas of the ship in which there has been no access until today are recovered.

The removal of the vehicles from the ship will reveal, among other things, the extent of the damage to the passenger vehicles (and luggage therein) located in the lower garages, which, as reported at the beginning of the year, were not affected by the fire. Technical experts appointed by our firm will examine thoroughly the vehicles of NORMAN ATLANTIC passengers we represent, in order to determine the extent and type of damage due to the high temperatures, gases, fumes and their long stay in the garages of the ship.

Meanwhile, on November 6, 2015 the process for the recovery and decryption of the vessel’s VDR data will resume. The respective data is expected with great interest as it is an essential key not only for uncovering the causes of the fire, but also for determining the failures and responsibilities in the delayed and unsuccessful response to the fire and rescue of the passengers.